General Atomics awarded contract for Ford-class EMALS and AAG spares

General Atomics Electromagnetic Systems (GA-EMS) has been awarded a definitized delivery order for the first set of on board repair parts (spares), providing sustainment support to the Electromagnetic Aircraft Launch System (EMALS) and Advanced Arresting Gear (AAG) system on the USS Gerald R. Ford (CVN-78) aircraft carrier.

This delivery order also provides spares to support the AAG land-based site at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, New Jersey.

“We’ve worked tirelessly with the Navy to bring these complex and transformative systems to life, from the initial EMALS and AAG concepts through the first successful F/A-18F aircraft launch and arrestment on CVN 78 at sea ,” stated Rolf Ziesing, vice president of Programs at GA-EMS. “This delivery order, along with other GA-EMS delivery orders and contracts, provides the Navy with a source for spares, depot repairs, and technical support necessary to keep EMALS and AAG performing efficiently and consistently.”

Under the various delivery orders and contracts, GA-EMS will provide equipment assessment and analysis, quality assurance, manufacturing, and integration for parts at their manufacturing facility in Tupelo, MS.

In addition, GA-EMS personnel will provide technical support on board CVN-78 during at-sea ship certification evolutions. Hands-on crew training is also being offered at the GA-EMS ship-set control lab in San Diego, and at the land-based test sites at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, New Jersey.

“GA-EMS is leaning forward and building the foundation for EMALS and AAG system sustainment for the entire Ford-class, including the future USS John F. Kennedy (CVN 79), which is currently under construction, and the future USS Enterprise (CVN 80),” continued Ziesing. “We are committed to implementing the most efficient plans and processes that will continue to meet the Navy’s requirements as each carrier joins the fleet.”

EMALS provides sophisticated software controls and power electronics to drive the world’s largest linear induction motors to ensure accurate end speeds and smoother accelerations.

It delivers necessary higher-launch energy capacity, improvements in system maintenance, increased reliability and efficiency, and more accurate end-speed control and smooth acceleration compared to the traditional steam catapult based aircraft launch system.

EMALS is designed to expand the operational capability of the Navy’s future carriers to include all current and future planned carrier aircraft – from lightweight unmanned aircraft to heavy strike fighters.

AAG is a turbo-electric system designed for controlled and reliable deceleration of aircraft during recovery operations on carriers.

Both systems continue land-based testing at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, New Jersey, to support the launch and recovery of all aircraft types and models scheduled for the Ford-class air wing.

Advanced Arresting Gear (AAG)
First recovery of a U.S. Navy F/A-18E Super Hornet by an Advanced Arresting Gear (AAG) system onboard the USS Gerald R. Ford (CVN-78) aircraft carrier PHoto Courtesy: U.S. Navy

General Atomics

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